Employers add 6,800 jobs last month; 11,000 since June

ST. PAUL — Minnesota employers added 6,800 jobs in July, according to figures released today by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED).

The agency said the unemployment rate climbed 0.2 percent from June to a seasonally adjusted 5.8 percent, staying well below the U.S. rate of 8.3 percent.

Last month’s job growth combined with job gains in June — revised downward to 4,200 new jobs — means the state has added 11,000 jobs in the past two months. That compares with a net gain of 200 jobs from February to May.

“The state has added more than 30,000 private sector jobs in the past year,” said DEED Commissioner Mark Phillips. “That growth along with increasing job vacancies and record high job postings online continue to point to sustained demand for labor in Minnesota.”

Government led all sectors in July with 3,100 new jobs. Other job growth occurred in trade, transportation and utilities, up 2,100, professional and business services, up 1,800, manufacturing, up 1,700, education and health services, up 1,300, financial activities, up 800, and logging and mining, up 100.

Job losses occurred in leisure and hospitality, down 3,200, construction, down 600, other services, down 200, and information, down 100.

Over the last year, the following sectors have added jobs: government, up 26,900, professional and business services, up 17,400, education and health services, up 10,500, manufacturing, up 4,900, construction, up 3,900, financial activities, up 2,400, information, up 900, other services, up 400, and logging and mining, up 200.

The gain of 26,900 government jobs from one year ago is distorted, however, because thousands of state employees were temporarily laid off in July 2011 during the state government shutdown. Because nearly 21,000 state employees returned to work later that month, they were counted as over-the-year job gains in this report.

Job losses in the past year occurred in leisure and hospitality, down 9,300, and trade, transportation and utilities, down 1,200.

In the state Metropolitan Statistical Areas, job gains occurred in the past 12 months in the Mankato MSA, up 4.3 percent, St. Cloud MSA, up 3.5 percent, Minneapolis-St. Paul MSA, up 1.9 percent, and Rochester MSA, up 1.3 percent. Job losses occurred in the Duluth-Superior MSA, down 0.7 percent.